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Master in Teaching Math and Science
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Master in Teaching Math and Science (MTMS)

Peterson Hall | 206-281-2091


The Master in Teaching Math and Science (MTMS) program at Seattle Pacific University combines a Washington state Residency Certificate with a Master’s degree specifically designed for teaching secondary math and science.

Candidates in the MTMS program become effective teachers by:

  • Demonstrating effective teaching practices
  • Centering instruction on high expectations for student achievement
  • Recognizing and responding to individual student learning needs
  • Providing clear and intentional focus on subject matter content and curriculum
  • Fostering and managing a safe, positive learning environment
  • Using multiple student data elements to modify instruction and improve student learning
  • Communicating and collaborating with parents and the school community
  • Exhibiting collaborative and collegial practices focused on improving instruction and learning

The certification component of the MTMS program is 45 credits. Approximately one-third of these credits are allocated for a full-time, 42-week internship. Completion of certification courses, internship requirements, and passing program assessments qualifies candidates for a Washington state Residency Certificate. This certificate enables candidates to teach in public and private schools in Washington state. The master’s degree is earned by completing an additional 15 graduate-level credits or five classes.

Please note that tuition rates for the certification portion of the program and the master's component of the program are differentiated. While certification courses are offered at a reduced rate, students across all masters programs take the master's component classes at the regular graduate tuition rate. 

All credits are offered at the graduate level. Several courses in the MTMS program are specifically aligned with mathematics and science pedagogy while others are adaptations of SPU's current Master of Arts in Teaching program.


Coursework begins in the summer with online and on-campus classes in learning theory, general teaching methods, curriculum design, and literacy strategies. Coursework varies depending on endorsement area to provide discipline-specific emphasis. Candidates typically enroll in classes with peers who are earning the same primary endorsement to promote collegial interdependence. Candidates usually attend on-campus classes one night a week from approximately 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Internship begins in late August as K-12 teachers return to school for in-service training. Candidates intern across the school year, while completing online and on-campus coursework. On-campus and online coursework integrates internship experiences to assist candidates in applying educational theory and research to planning, instruction, and assessment.

Candidates are paired with a mentor teacher and field supervisor in a supervised school setting. Internship is five days a week, for an entire K-12 school year, approximately 42 weeks, including in-service and end-of-the-year activities.

Candidates and mentor teachers follow a co-teaching model where responsibility for planning, instruction, management, and assessment is shared. Candidates begin internship with focused observations and progress to independent teaching. Across internship, candidates complete assignments designed to maximize field experiences, such as portfolio reflections, unit plans, and program assessments. Internship concludes with candidates returning control of classroom responsibilities to their mentor teachers.


Candidates earn the MTMS degree by completing five graduate level courses, totaling 15 credits. Classes required for the MTMS degree are not needed for certification. However, most candidates complete degree requirements immediately following certification to increase their base salary.

Candidates may delay completion of degree requirements for five years following the quarter of admission as long as active enrollment status is maintained by completing one class every four quarters. Students admitted to the MTMS program with a master’s degree need only to complete EDU 6085 to receive the MTMS degree.


Students must be continuously enrolled in required SPU courses to earn a graduate degree or until the student is officially withdrawn from the program. Exceptions to continuous enrollment must be approved by the program chair.

A student who decides to no longer pursue a graduate degree may officially withdraw from the program and the university by notifying the program chair and the graduate programs manager.

A student may be granted a leave of absence for up to four quarters by the program chair. Once the leave of absence has expired, the student will either enroll in graduate coursework or be dropped from the program.

The university office of Student Academic Services (SAS) requires continuous enrollment to remain admitted in a graduate program. After four quarters of non- enrollment, students will be placed in “inactive status” and will need to reapply for admission.


  • Earn a Washington Residency Teacher Certificate
  • Complete a Master in Teaching Math and Science, which offers greater teaching expertise and a higher position on the salary scale
  • Progress through the program with fellow students in a cohort
  • Enjoy personalized advising and mentoring from faculty and staff
  • Take part in a full-time, year-long internship experience with diverse learners
  • Learn from technology instruction embedded in the curriculum
  • Create a personalized Teacher Development Plan
  • Receive guaranteed enrollment in certification courses


The MTMS program recognizes the alternative routes to certification that have been identified by the Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB). These routes are for individuals who possess a unique set of qualifications and wish to earn a Washington state Residency Certificate.

Applicants to the MTMS program fit one of these profiles, though all routes require a bachelor's degree.

Route 2: Currently employed staff member (such as para-educators, instructional assistants, or education aides) with a school district or private school and a minimum of one year of career-related experience

Route 3: Individuals not currently employed by a school district or private school (such as those considering career change)

Route 4: Teachers employed in a public school on a Conditional or Emergency Certificate or teachers employed in private schools


Candidates in the MTMS program must hold an accredited bachelor’s degree, preferably with a major aligned with a state-recognized endorsement area, and meet all residency certification requirements. Candidates with an undergraduate degree or major in a field not recognized as an endorsement area by Washington State may need to complete additional courses to meet content requirements.

Applications are due February 1. Qualified applicants are invited to participate in group interviews mid-to late March.

Applicants must submit the following materials for admission into the program:

  • Application and $50 application processing fee
  • Official transcript(s) from each college or university attended
    • If your degree is not from a U.S. college or university, please arrange for your transcript to be evaluated by an accredited transcript evaluation company such as WES. Have the report forwarded directly to the Graduate Center.
  • Personal statement (1–2 pages)
  • Résumé
  • GRE (Graduate Record Exam)or MAT (Miller Analogies Test)scores taken within five years of application
    • On the former GRE exam, preferred minimum combined Verbal and Quantitative score of 950
    • On the revised GRE exam, preferred minimum scores of Verbal: 148 and Quantitative: 147
    • On the MAT, preferred minimum scaled score of 400*
  • Two to four letters of recommendation.
  • Passing WEST-B scores including 240 on each subtest: reading, writing, and mathematics
    • Applicants may use a combination of SAT, ACT, and WEST-B scores to meet the WEST-B requirement (reading writing, mathematics). Please contact the Graduate Center if you have questions.
      • Minimum SAT scores required - Math: 515, Reading: 500, Writing: 490
      • Minimum ACT scores required - Math: 22, Reading: 22, Writing: 8
  • Passing State Endorsement Test
    • WEST-E or NES must be passed January 1 of the first year of the program, except for those endorsing in special education,designated world languages, and English language learners, which must be passed September 1 of the second year of the program.
    • Those endorsing in designated world languages or bilingual education must also pass oral and writing proficiency tests (OPI and WPT) in their language area
    • Several NES study guides are located on the main floor Reference section of the SPU library
  • Endorsement Verification form
    • Endorsements are the content and grade levels a teacher is prepared to teach. The Professional Education Standards Board (PESB) provides a comprehensive list of all endorsements offered at SPU.
      • If your college major matches your intended endorsement, complete the Endorsement Verification form in the application.
      • If your major does not match your intended endorsement, please contact Dr. Greg Gelderman. Complete the Endorsement Verification form only after contacting Dr. Gelderman. On the form, indicate that you have been in contact with him and list your "Approved Plan of Study" if one has been developed.
  • Moral Character and Personal Fitness Policy form (found in the online application)



Financial aid is available for qualified applicants through Student Financial Services or by calling 1-800-737-8826.

Teachers employed through Conditional or Emergency certificates may be able to remain employed in their school district or private school while completing internship requirements.

Prospective candidates are encouraged to visit the Office of the Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Professional Educator Standards Board for additional information on becoming a teacher in Washington state.


The Graduate Center

Seattle Pacific University
3307 Third Avenue West, Suite 111
Seattle, WA 98119-1922


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